Monday, April 26, 2010

Missionary Miracles for Elder Lee

Do you believe in miracles? This will be a difficult e-mail to write as it has been an emotional weekend for me. This is the finish of a long and very tender experience for me. 10 weeks ago I was introduced to a woman looking for the answers to life's greatest questions. Elder Obike and I entered her home ironically on his first day here in Bournemouth. We testified of Jesus Christ and the reality that he continues to bless our lives today. On the next visit we met her husband. A curious man torn and beaten by the evils of the world and now ready to accept God into his life. We taught who Jesus Christ is and what he did for us. Throughout the month of March we taught wonderful, simple and beautiful gospel truths. Our teach of the Plan of Salvation was the most powerful teach of my mission. It was as if angels came and ministered to us as they did in times of old. Then came the baptismal commitment. We were scared but we knew that it was our purpose. The spirit was present as we invited this beautiful couple to enter into the covenant of baptism as a family. THEY ACCEPTED! They came to church and they read the Book of Mormon every day as they followed their calender leading to baptism. Then something happened. Elder Obike transfered to Reading and a new missionary came in. His virtue and love to obedience brought a consistant feeling to the room. Elder Greeley was quickly accepted and immediately contributed to the teaching process. Their progression continued as we got into the final 3 days leading to their baptism. All was well but we knew that there would be opposition. The opposition came the night before. We got a phone call asking us to come and visit Andrew and Jackie. Their confidence for baptism was quickly replaced by feelings of doubt and inadequacy. Their bright countenance was for a moment dark. We prayed and prayed again. We left their home unsure about the baptism but as prayers were offered throughout the night we got a text in the morning that told us the baptism would go through. The baptism was scheduled for 6:30 and at 5:45 we got a call that Andrew did not want to be baptised and that there was a fight over the issue. We were scared and prayed again. They came and we resolved the concern. As a family Jackie and Andrew Kiff were baptised and confirmed.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

April Break

I think that is what they just called the two days off of school at Challenger! It couldn't be "spring break" because they just had that! Good Friday and Easter had a break too, then there was Civil Rights Day and President's Day, then 1/2 day for end of grading period and then 1/2 day again for Parent / Teacher conferences for a whole week! NO MORE SCHOOL BREAKS!!!
Anyways . . . Branden had strep the first part of the week so by Thursday, we were just making sure that Donivan wasn't going to get it, especially since they were sharing a Gatorade at their t-ball game Tuesday night! I had signed up to do service in the Temple cafeteria Thursday morning, not realizing that they had more time off of school. So when I got home, we took naps and then ate at the boy's favorite restaurant (OK, mine too!) Gecko and then we finished using the last of our free passes for bowling! They loved that! We enjoyed having Tanner come along with us! He wasn't feeling well so he took the day off school as well!

I have watched Braxton and Merek on Fridays this past month while Jenna worked some wedddings with her mother. Good opportunity for her to make some money and a great chance for me to get some good "grandma" time in! Uncle Branden & Uncle Donivan love spending time with their nephews!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Peyton's 5th Birthday

We absolutely LOVE our little/big Peyton! He turned "five" on April 20th. I LOVE when Peyton comes to my house. His "Grandma hugs" are the best and makes me feel very special!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Good Ol' Ryan

I was sitting at the computer writing Ryan his weekly letter and Tanner came to the computer and we went to Ryan's facebook photos and had a great time remembering our crazy Ryan. The one thing about Ryan that we all love is when Ryan is around, you can always plan on having a fun time. Ryan always made us laugh and made you feel happy when you were with him. I thought I would share some of our fun memories of Ryan before his mission.

Conrad Jenson and Ryan purchased old men masks one Halloween and had so much fun with them. It was the funniest thing ever! When he went up to NAU, he took his mask, an old 1980's robe and on Halloween morning, sat on a bench on compass and winked at all the girls. He really freaked them out!

The boys were just barely 4 years old when Ryan left for his mission. He was their best bud. They have great memories of Ryan coming home from work and taking them swimming every afternoon. Ryan always made time for them and they LOVE him and look forward to him coming home!

High School graduation and some of his friends.

Ryan loved to hike the Grand Canyon. His favorite place in all the world was Havasupai. He could go down and come back up all in one day! However, he LOVED to stay down and play as long as possible.

Ryan loved to cycle. When Mom wanted him to save his money for college and mission, he spent $1300 on a bike. He rode it everywhere, had a few crashes but LOVED the sport.

Ryan, Kevin and Tanner at Magic Mountain.

Bleached hair at NAU!

Ryan loved repelling. He took most of his family and friends often.

A fun dance at NAU, what a hick!!!

The Gilbert Higley Stake Youth Trek - just two weeks prior to his mission!

We miss him, we wouldn't want him to be anywhere else but we are so excited for June 18th to come!!! He loves the Brits! He has had much success with no regrets!!!

Friday, April 9, 2010

GO. . . TANNER . . . GO!!!

Tanner is running track again this year. He is following in Ryan's BIG footsteps or I should say is running in them! He is working hard and may just beat some of Ryan's records. This is him running the 4 x 800.

Tanner is running the 1600 here. He was followed closely by the Williams Field guy but ended up sprinting out and beating him!

His biggest fan club! (Mom too but she is taking the picture!) Its so fun to listen to the boys cheer him on!

He has given his all! Way to go. . . Tanner!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Its been a GREAT day!

This is the way that Rachelle LOVES to unwind! After a stressful day, she often comes home and says, I wish that I could just hold Merek! Should I go get him!!! Its obvious that he kinda likes her too! She will make such a GREAT mommy someday!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

1st T-ball game

Branden & Donivan had their first T-ball game. (4/5/10) It was the most fun that I have had in a long time! Big brother, Tanner went with me and we didn't stop laughing the entire game. The boys missed the first two practices because of the wedding last week. I kind of worried that perhaps they wouldn't know exactly what to do but Tanner assured me that they most definitely did! And they did!!!

We had to go to several different stores to find a small lefty t-ball mitt. Donivan is left handed just like his Dad and Kyle!

After we arrived, got our new "Blue Thunder" shirts, I placed their hats on their heads. The first thing they did was turn the hats around to wear them "just like Tanner"!

Mark missed the game because I forgot to schedule him off work early so when he looked at the pictures, he could only comment on "their perfect form"!!!

It didn't matter where the coach positioned Donivan, the minute the ball was hit, he was all over the field to get it first! Even if it meant tackling a team mate! He would pick it up and put both hands in the air and yell, "I got it Tanner"! Tanner had to teach him to throw the ball to first base! Finally the coach put him in the pitcher position and the ball was hit pretty hard off into right field. Donivan took off running and still was the first one to get the ball!

As I sat there on the field, once again, I couldn't believe that I was doing this all over again! However, I wouldn't trade this for anything in the world!!!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Grandma Lee

We love to visit Grandma Lee and cherish our great memories with her. We don't visit as much as we should but when we do, there is plenty of LOVE to go around!

Kevin, Braxton and Grandma Lee

Sam and Grandma Lee at the Famlee Christmas Party!

Sometimes we even do crazy shots with Mom's camera while we are visiting!

Sunday, April 4, 2010


EASTER was very lame this year at our home. We just finished the wedding and mom was very tired and partied out! However a wonderful friend and neighbor came to the rescue and planned a neighborhood Easter egg hunt while the men were at the Priesthood session. Lots of eggs and grilled hotdogs, beans and fruit! Only a little boy could love that meal! Sunday was General Conference so we relaxed at home and ate leftovers from the wedding dinner! We saved the great meal that I had planned for next Sunday. We had all been together quite abit for the wedding so all the married kids went to the in-laws for dinner. Kyle & Chrystal were honeymooning in San Diego when a 7.2 earthquake hit and rocked their 28th floor hotel room! Michael & Tessa spent the day with us watching conference and we ended the evening with Braxton and Merek coming for a visit so the day was wonderful! (Oh yes - Kevin & Jenna came with them!!!!)